Thursday, June 13, 2024  |



Hekkie Budler beats Siyabongo Siyo at junior flyweight

Hekkie Budler - Photo by Naoki Fukuda
Fighters Network

Hekkie Budler returned to the ring in a new weight class on Saturday night, winning a 12-round unanimous decision over Siyabonga Siyo at Emperor’s Palace in Kempton Park, South Africa. With the win, Budler improves to 30-2 (9 knockouts). Siyo drops to 10-2 (4 KOs).

It was the first fight for Budler in over seven months. In that bout, Budler lost a close unanimous decision to Byron Rojas of Nicaragua and the WBA minimumweight title in the process.

It was a competitive bout between the two South African fighters but Budler mostly landed the more effective punches.

The taller Budler stunned Siyo midway through the second round but was in pain near the end of round four when Siyo landed a low blow.

Siyo attempted to mount an offense midway through the fight, finding success in spots. But Budler was the fresher fighter of the two, toward the end of the fight, effectively countering anytime Siyo tried to get on the inside.

Scorecards were 116-112 twice and 118-110 for Budler.

After the fight, Budler announced he would fight as a junior flyweight. He is still ranked No. 4 by THE RING magazine at 105 pounds.

Fringe welterweight contender Chris Van Heerden (25-2-1, 12 KOs) won a wide 12-round decision over Sacky Shikukutu (22-4-1, 13 KOs) of Namibia.

Fighting for the first time in over three-and-a-half years in his native South Africa, the southpaw Van Heerden worked behind an effective jab to effectively outbox Shikutuku from the outside.

All three official judges scored the bout in favor of Van Heerden, 117-111 twice and 118-110.

In the “Super 4 Tournament” final, cruiserweight Kevin Lerena (16-1, 8 KOs) won a 10-round majority decision over Micki Nielsen (22-1, 14 KOs) of Denmark. One official ringside judge scored the bout 95-95, while the other two judges scored the bout 96-95 and 97-93 in favor of Lerena, who resides in South Africa.



Francisco A. Salazar has written for RingTV since October of 2013 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (California) Star newspaper, and Knockout Nation. He can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter at FSalazarBoxing.



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